Review: The Mountain Winery

14831 Pierce Road
Saratoga, CA 95070
(408) 741-2822

Welcome to champagne wishes and musical dreams. From its post in the the winding hills of the Santa Clara Valley, Saratoga’s Mountain Winery has a magical air. The “vineyard in the sky” came to be in 1905 as La Cresta, where esteemed vintner Paul Masson turned out his award-winning sparkling wines.

The 2500-seat amphitheater was built in 1958, its stage placed against the dramatic backdrop a 12th-century Spanish Portal (which Masson “acquired” from the rubble of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in San Jose after the 1906 earthquake). Over the years, the famous summer concert series has hosted major music talents from Ray Charles to Harry Connick, Jr. to Willie Nelson.

As would be expected, there’s plenty of wine to buy or sample, and there’s also a concert dining package that includes a three-course prix-fixe meal before the show. The tasting room is open from noon until early evening Thursday through Sunday, provided there is not an event occurring (tastings cost $10), and the winery offers a series of tasting classes.

Concert Checklist: Bring along cushions for hard seating, a warm layer (nights get chilly), and cash (most food and parking are cash only).

Read about the other places to see a show in the Bay Area.

Driving is pretty much your only option, but you can green your trip (and save money—the Winery offers a $5 discount to cars with three or more people) by carpooling. Use the Winery’s carpoolworld resource to connect with fellow concert-goers.